What are the real facts about bees dying?
There has been a lot of concern about bees dying. Some bees have died, to be sure, but there has been a lot of reaction without level-headed evaluation. I have put together a list of articles that give good reasons to question the headline hysteria. Why is this important? Why not just “play it safe?” Because besides being a huge waste of time and energy, too many times “playing it safe” means taking action or making laws that are actually harmful overall.
The first step in evaluating the claims is to make sure you understand research. Research is a slippery monster. It is easy and common to make claims, conveniently test them to be true, and then enjoy the wave of sensationalism that comes from pleasing the unsuspecting crowd. The incentives for how to do research and what to study are much like politics since much of it is tied to government grants through universities. Always remember that a study does not trump wisdom based on experience.
So here are some articles that you may find interesting in evaluating what is being referred to a the Beepocalypse:
Ever since people have been domesticating animals, plants, and insects, there have been things to learn. Most of the time it is the experience and effort of the individual directly involved in that particular business that give the best long term problem solving results. When governments ride waves of hysteria and pass laws, they do much more harm than good.
I am not a bee keeper, but as a gardener with nearly 3 decades of experience with large gardens, I know I am currently seeing all kinds of bees all over the place, everywhere in the world I have been in the past few years. If someone has honest concern, then maybe they can take action on their own property. However, given the propensity of government decisions to be like big ships running into ice bergs, it seems wisest to avoid asking for their *help*.